Only female mosquitoes bite.
They do it to fertilize their eggs.
And that has two nasty side effects:
1. You've just been bitten
2. They get to lay more eggs
Neither point sounds that great for us humans, most of us itch after a mosquito bites us because they inject us with a small amount of their own saliva to make it easier for them to suck our blood, and we typically have a slight alergic reaction to that.
The hidden danger of those bites though is that mosquitoes are well know for transmitting infectious diseases when they're busy biting us.
The 2 most deadly diseases are Malaria
and West Nile Virus
Mankind has tried for generations to wipe out mosquitoes (almost in a race in cases like the building of the panama canal) and so far, we've failed. In fact we've failed so badly that mosquitoes have actually spread further across the planet.
- We know they breed in standing water (not running rivers, but places like blocked guttering, fish ponds and bird tables).
- We know they like to breed during summer months when the temperature is warmer.
- We know some things naturally like to eat mosquitoes (like dragonflies and bats) and some fish (mosquitofish aka Gambusia Affinis) naturally feed on mosquito larvae.
- We know some mozzies breeds like to "hunt" for blood at dawn and at dusk.
This knowledge hasn't yet got us to the point where we are able to push mosquitoes to the edge of extinction, but it has helped us modify our behaviour and produce products like mosquito repellants
, mosquito killers
and mosquito nets
that make it harder for mosquitoes to bite us and that in turn makes it harder for them to breed.
We've also produced man-made chemicals like permethrin
that we can spray on our clothes and our gardens that kill mosquitoes once they've landed on it.
We've actually also produced mosquito attractants and repellents. Deet Spray
and Mosquito coils
keep them away where as octenol
can be used to pull mosquitoes into a place (usually to capture or kill them) - Octenol, however, is not widely used in England.